We walk in the company of the women who have gone before, Mothers of the faith both named and unnamed, Testifying with ferocity and faith to the Spirit of wisdom and healing.
They are the judges, the prophets, the martyrs, the warriors, poets, lovers and saints who are near to us in the shadow of awareness, in the crevices of memory, in the landscape of our dreams.
We walk in the company of Deborah, who judged the Israelites with authority and strength. We walk in the company of Esther, who used her position as Queen to ensure the welfare of her people.
We walk in the company of you whose names have been lost and silenced, who kept and
cradled the wisdom of the ages.
We walk in the company of the woman with the flow of blood, who audaciously sought her healing and release.
We walk in the company of Mary Magdalene, who wept at the empty tomb until the risen
We walk in the company of Phoebe, who led an early church in the empire of Rome.
We walk in the company of Perpetua of Carthage, whose witness in the third century led to her martyrdom.
We walk in the company of Olya, princess of Ukraine through whom Christian faith was
introduced to our people. We walk in the company of Josaphat Hordashevska, whose witness of service calls us to “Serve your people, where the need is greatest.”
We walk in the company of Maria Shved and the many unnamed women who were murdered for their faith by the Soviets.
We walk in the company of the Argentine Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo, who turned their grief to strength, standing together to remember “the disappeared” children of war with a holy indignation.
We walk in the company of you mothers of the faith, who teach us to resist evil with boldness, to lead with wisdom, and to heal.
(Adapted from “A Litany to Honour Women” by Shane Claiborne)